Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Back to School!

There was no better feeling than returning from my summer travels to big hugs and bigger smiles at Vatsalya.  I'm really loving being back in some sort of a "routine", as much as one can have here.

Lots of changes have happened at school, with a new principal and teachers, the addition of a phy. ed. teacher, and many new students. I am attempting to memorize lots of new names, and adjust to the various issues that arise with a class full of new students who don't understand a word I am saying.

The children who have consistently attended Vatsalya and live at the orphanage have some pretty amazing English skills, so I heavily rely on them to help me translate information to the newer students. They are also helping me with some of my Hindi so I can better communicate myself.

One thing that the students I've worked with the past year are familiar with is my iPhone. It is the best teaching tool I have. I can use my translation app to help students understand a word that I have difficulty explaining, or Google photos to show them something new. I also have video taped them reading so they can hear what their English sounds like.

The new children, however, have likely never seen an iPhone and are completely obsessed. Everyone wants their picture or video taken, and honestly I can't blame them. Cameras and even mirrors can be rare, so getting the chance to see what you look like and see this technology is pretty cool.

That being said, my phone has gotten good use these past few weeks. I have some videos and pictures to share. "Take my photo Didi" seems to be the new favorite phrase.

Here are some of the boys after a big sports tournament in Jaipur. Dinesh won second overall in track!
-photo courtesy of Vatsalya

Here are the girls about to leave for their tournament. 

Here are two adorable videos I took at school...

These are some kids in dance class during activities time. Laxshmi is a great dancer and teacher. The little ones are doing their best to keep up.

This clip is a rare moment of peace during prayers before mid-day meal. Aakash, however, noticed me video taping and just had to get in on the action halfway through the clip.

And as always, remember you can donate to Vatsalya here!!!

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